The Little Epicurean

May 20 2015

Japanese Melon Pan

Japanese Melon Pan | the little epicurean

For most of my childhood and well into adolescence, I loved anime and manga. Think: Sailor Moon, Hana Yori Dango, Honey and Clover, Bleach, Death Note, etc. (I could go on and on…) During weekends and summer vacations, I’d binge watch episodes and read for hours. And then during college, my roommates and I were totally into Japanese and Korean comedies and dramas. We would stay up well into the early morning, crying and watching these intense and addicting shows and series. And now in present time, thanks to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime, binge watching shows and movies has become way too easy.

So back to the anime and manga, one food item commonly mentioned in these stories is melon pan. Melon pan, also known as melon bread or melon bun, is simply a sweet bread. It is not melon flavored (although you can find ones that are). It’s named such because of the cookie crust topping that resembles the melon rind. Melon pan is quite similar to pineapple bun, pan dulce and conchas. They all share some sort of cookie crust topping. But more importantly, they’re all delicious snacks.

The cookie crust is everything! It provides the perfect texture to complement the soft bread. The topping is crunchy, sweet, and makes me want to eat more and more!

Japanese Melon Pan | the little epicurean

The bread dough is fairly straight forward to make. After mixing the dough together, let it rise until it’s doubled in volume. While the dough is resting, make the cookie crust and keep in the fridge until ready to use. Once the dough has risen, divide it into 8 equal parts. I like to use a kitchen scale so the breads rolls are all uniform. Place the bread rolls on a parchment lined baking sheet and cover the bread with plastic wrap. The plastic wrap prevents the dough from drying out and forming unwanted “elephant” skin.

Japanese Melon Pan | the little epicurean

Remove the cookie dough from the fridge and divide it into 8 parts. Gently roll out the cookie dough until it is large enough to cover the bread rolls.

May 17 2015

Strawberry Basil Granita

Strawberry Basil Granita | the little epicurean

My brother and I were making granitas way before we even knew what it was. Growing up loved drinks that came in cool containers: think Sqeezit, Capri Sun, and Kool-Aid Bursts. Yes, definitely not the most healthy choices, but those were our favorites. Although, I don’t know if I could stomach them at this age.

May 12 2015

Cinnamon Sugar Milk Bread Toast

Cinnamon Sugar Milk Bread Toast | the little epicurean

Bread is good. Toast is better. Toast is major in LA. You are sure to find a hip version of it at all the cool coffee shops and cafes. When I lived in Silver Lake, I couldn’t get enough of the brioche toast with jam from Sqirl. It’s killer. As soon as I moved to Pasadena,

May 07 2015

Japanese Milk Bread

Japanese Milk Bread | the little epicurean

Bread is my weakness. Crusty French baguettes, chewy Italian ciabatta, and this oh so fluffy and heavenly Japanese milk bread. Ever since my high school days, there have always been diets and fads telling me to stay away from breads. It’s not that I couldn’t do it, it’s just that I don’t want to deny myself

May 05 2015

Roasted Banana Bread with coconut, chocolate, and pecans

Roasted Banana Bread with coconut, chocolate + pecans | the little epicurean

Roasted banana bread with shredded coconut, chopped dark chocolate, and toasted pecans. This banana bread has a lot going on, but all I can think about when I see/hear the word “banana” is Gwen Stefani singing Hollaback Girl B-A-N-A-N-A-S. (I’m not weird, right? It’s not just me?) Every time I make a new banana bread

Something Sweet